Iconic British actor Alan Rickman, aged 69, sadly passed away today after briefly suffering with cancer. Rickman played several iconic roles in his career, notably villains and was famed for his incredible diction and recognizable voice. Perhaps his most famous role and the one that first got him attention in Hollywood as perhaps one of the best villains of all time, Hans Gruber opposite Bruce Willis in Die Hard in 1988. He went on to play several more bad guys in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves as the Sheriff of Nottingham and Rasputin in the acclaimed 1995 movie of the same name.
And although he might be best known for playing these supporting roles, he also acted in several leading roles such as Truly, Madly, Deeply; Sense and Sensibility and Love, Actually
He is perhaps most famous to younger audiences having played the role of Professor Snape in the Harry Potter movies, in which he mastered the character and often stood out from the rest of the cast in the way he said so much with his subtleties as an actor.
Although Rickman never won an Oscar, he did receive a Golden Globe, an Emmy, and a BAFTA among many more other awards.
The Guardian reports Rickman’s own attitude towards his movies as:
Actors are agents of change, A film, a piece of theatre, a piece of music, or a book can make a difference. It can change the world.
Which I think best sums up Rickman’s persona as an actor. He was unassuming and never tried to fit into the Hollywood A-List crowd, yet allowed his characters to define a generation
Although he is most well-known for his film roles, it was his roles in theatre that really established him as a British actor to keep an eye on and he starred in several award winning roles. His love for theatre never died and he continued to act in productions up until as recent as 2010.
He leaves behind his wife, Rima Horton, with whom he has been in a relationship with since 1965, even though they only got married as recently as 2012.
The official statement from the family was:
The actor and director Alan Rickman has died from cancer at the age of 69. He was surrounded by family and friends.
He will truly be missed as an actor, but his work will live on in our lives forever.
Last Updated: January 14, 2016